AI, Automation Help Airlines Keep Up During Flight Delays, Cancellations


AI, Automation Help Airlines Keep Up During Flight Delays, Cancellations

By Special Guest
Bhupender Singh, CEO of Intelenet Global Services
  |  July 06, 2017

After an enjoyable break abroad, passengers do not want to experience being stranded at an airport as a consequence of their flight being delayed, cancelled, or rescheduled. The travel industry is having to face rising operating costs, evolving customer needs, and global challenges that pose a range of threats for companies right now. Whether it’s on or off the runway, travel providers need to recognize the importance of good customer service during flight disruptions, as this will make a real difference for both customers and travel companies.

Putting the customer’s needs first during difficult circumstances is crucial for travel providers to differentiate from competitors. Technology is changing the ways customers interact with contact center agents, and during flight disruptions it is even more important to ensure frontline staff are fully equipped to deal with issues as and when they occur. During peak travel season, the high volume of incoming customer queries make it more important than ever to treat every customer with utmost care. This underpins the need for travel providers to seek ways in which they can navigate through peak travel seasons to manage customer expectations and streamline costs.

The environment has evolved as customers have become more digitally savvy, using both traditional as well as innovative support channels to engage with travel providers. Airlines and online travel agents are beginning to connect the dots between multiple channels so they can speed up communication and fast track resolutions. Mobile technology has increased the scope for interaction between customers and travel companies, as travelers can now share experiences and manage their travel plans. Travel providers are honing in on these channels to drive excellent customer experience through a holistic strategy to encourage positive brand value.

 As technology transforms the travel experience, from implementing online checking in to tracking baggage, it is important not to underestimate the importance of human interaction. In particularly busy travel periods, there is significantly more pressure placed on every aspect of running an airline business, including those that might sometimes be overlooked. For instance, delays caused by busy check-in and security can have a major knock-on effect when it comes to customer service provisions.

Three in three U.S. flyers prefer an agent to handle and resolve issues. An effective customer experience management strategy is a blend of innovative digital communications tools and skilled employees who are able to manage customer experience, especially during challenging times. Technology empowers employees who are at the forefront of customer queries to help them better engage with customers. Automation can reduce retail losses by 50 percent and increases agent productivity. Automation tools cut down manual intervention, which is prone to error, to increase the quality of customer service. Automating the back-end systems to support contact center agents cuts down the handling time, improves customer sentiment, and converts customer browsing into sales to drive a growth in revenues.

Customer service across travel contact centers is an important element in ensuring customers’ browsing habits are being converted into sales. Using next-generation automation tools, contact center agents are empowered with the digital capabilities to better service customer needs. One bad experience will affect whether or not a customer will come back to you. Agents have a responsibility to ensure they engage with customers during their hour of need. 

Edited by Alicia Young
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